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How Alkaline Foods and Acid Foods Affect Your Body’s pH Balance

By Cliff Smith

Picture of girl with acid foods and alkaline foodsAs consumers gain more knowledge about nutrition, they realize that a daily ratio of alkaline foods to acid foods determines pH balance and affects overall health. Human blood registers about 7.4 on the pH scale, which means that it is naturally alkaline.  In order to sustain this level, it is important to consume the proper balance of acid foods and alkaline foods.

What is pH Balance?

It is a way of measuring the acidity or alkalinity of a substance on a scale of zero to fourteen, with a pH of seven being considered “neutral.” A pH that is lower than seven is considered acidic and a pH above seven is alkaline.  For every unit a solution moves up or down on the pH balance scale, it registers a tenfold increase in the degree that it is acid or alkaline. When measuring alkaline foods, it is the mineral makeup of the substance after metabolization that is evaluated.

How Do Alkaline Foods Affect Your Overall Health?

It has been found that pH balance plays an important role in your total well-being because bacteria, viruses, yeast, and other harmful organisms thrive when the blood system is more acidic.  So, maintaining a pH balance with more alkaline foods can create an uninviting environment for the very things that might make you sick.  That’s why consuming more alkaline foods than acid foods can be very beneficial to your overall fitness.

What Alkaline Foods Should You Eat for Proper pH Balance?

The best alkaline foods to consume are fresh fruits, vegetables, herbs and spices.  Simple seasonings like sea salt, cinnamon and oregano can be good choices.  Leafy green vegetables such as lettuce, spinach and beet greens are excellent alkaline foods.  Carrots, peppers, sweet potatoes, pumpkin and other orange or yellow vegetables will also help alkalize the diet.  There are a few fruits and vegetables that are considered acid foods, so try to limit your intake of plums, corn, green olives, and cranberries.  It is interesting to note that ripe bananas are alkaline foods, but green bananas are more acidic.  Also, this may seem at odds with traditional thinking, but citrus fruits are usually known to be naturally alkaline foods.  Keep in mind that we are talking about the pH balance these foods register once they have been digested.

What are Acid Foods?

It is important to remember that you do need some acid foods to balance out the alkaline foods.  Most experts recommend a diet made up primarily of alkaline foods, but about twenty percent of your consumption should be acidic.  Common acid foods are pasta, meats and fish. Of course, coffee, sodas, sugars and alcohol can really tip pH balance to the acid side of the scale.  Other items that may be healthy might also be acid forming, such as nuts, whole grains and beans.  This doesn’t mean you should stop eating them.  It just means that you should be aware of the balance of alkaline foods to acid foods that you consume on a daily basis.

A diet made up primarily of alkaline foods like fresh fruits and vegetables will give you the best chance for a perfect pH balance.  However, it is important to remember that some acid foods are just as essential as the many choices available for alkaline foods. 

Author Profile--Cliff Smith is one of the owners of this virtual health food store online.  He helps people find simple ways to increase their daily consumption of alkaline foods while reducing acid foods.

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